This is why it is important to learn more about skin cancer and its prevention.
Skin cancer happens most often nowadays. It is very spread around the world. Melanoma is the most dangerous type of skin cancer. But it can be avoided if you follow some simple but very important rules and take all necessary precautions.
People with light skin color are more likely to get sun burnt and suffer from other outcomes of harmful sun influence. But people with dark skin color can also be exposed to unhealthy sun influence and as a result – skin cancer. There is no such thing as “healthy tanning”. Getting tanned means that skin produces a big dose of melanin pigment in reply to harmful ultraviolet rays during insolation. Cancer is more likely to affect people of any age, and melanoma most often happens to younger people.
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What factors increase risks of getting skin cancer?
- Light color of skin, blue or green eyes, blond, red or light-brown hair, skin with freckles – these factors indicate that you are genetically less protected from harmful sun effects.
- Being sun burnt a lot in the past increases your risks to get skin cancer.
- Family history of skin cancer cases is a serious reason to be careful under open sun rays.
- Staying or living in sunny climate or in the mountains.
- Previous cases of pre-malignant conditions or skin cancer treatment.
- Numerous moles and birth marks.
- Immunity issues like AIDS or cases of patients after organ transplantation.
- Taking medicines that increase sun influence sensibility, like oral contraceptives, non-steroid anti-inflammatory agents and some antibiotics, also some antidepressants).
Following precaution rules
Researches show that only 56% of people follow the rules that help prevent sun burns, even though protecting skin from harmful sun influence is the best way to decrease skin cancer risks.
So, what are those rules? First of all, always protect your skin. To protect yourself from harm caused by A type ultra violet rays (UVA) and type B ultraviolet rays (UVB), which are the most dangerous for human skin, chose wide range effect protective sun blocks, which cannot be washed off with water and have SPF at least 30. The bigger SPF is – the better your skin is protected. Children need special products which are made for them, because they need stronger protection and higher SPF. Put an even layer of cream to the skin and gently rub it. Use protection for every area of skin which is exposed to sun rays; don’t miss ears, lips, back of your neck. Put the cream on at least 20 minutes before going out – let it penetrate the skin and make a protection screen. Repeat the same actions every 2 hours, especially if you sweat or swim outside. Use sun protection all year round.
Besides using cosmetic protection, try to cover your skin with your clothes as much as it possible to stay comfortable. Wear light clothes with long sleeves. Thin cotton pants are better than shorts. Dark colored clothes protect better, but it is hotter to wear black. Always wear broad-brimmed hats or at least baseball caps to protect your face. Always put a hat on your child’s head! Even if they stay in the shadow on a sunny day: it only takes a few minutes for a child’s tender skin to get sun burnt, or even to get a sunstroke.
Wear sunglasses of high quality with good UVA-UVB protection. The bigger your glasses are – the better your eyes and skin around them is protected. Be careful when buying protective sun glasses, read markings and always ask sellers to give you all necessary information.
Avoid going outside in the hours of maximum sun activity. On a hot sunny day try to stay inside from 10 am till 4 pm. Make your daily plans according to this rule and don’t expose yourself or your family to the harmful sun influence in the peak activity hours. If it is necessary to go out, try to at least stay in the shadow. And definitely it is not allowed to go to the beach at this time of the day or to stay near a pool or to go skiing in the mountains. Remember, water, sand and snow reflect sunrays including ultra violet rays and this multiplies harmful effect. If you really need to go outside, but you plan to stay in the shadow most of the time, do use your protection cream anyway.
Be attentive to your own health and the health of your children and family. Make regular examinations of skin – check if you have any new moles, freckles or other new skin formation. If you notice something new – always consult your dermatologist. Skin cancer can appear not only on areas exposed to sun. It can be found even on the soles of human feet. So, timely examination of skin is vital.
Be persistent. Use protective creams all year round. Make it a good habit for yourself and your family members. Avoid sun burns. Always take care of your children and use special protection for them. And if you see someone else’s child exposed to sun without any protection, be sure to suggest your help.
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